Daily news summary

PM Babiš proposes Jourová for EU commissioner

Prime Minister Andrej Babiš met with the incoming president of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen on Monday to discuss the country’s nominee for European commissioner as well as a likely portfolio.

The Czech prime minister told journalists that he had proposed a second term for the country‘s present representative Věra Jourová, the current commissioner for justice, consumer protection and equality.

He said he hoped that her experience could help get the Czech Republic a stronger portfolio in the European Commission, for instance the internal market portfolio or digitalization.

Although her nomination still needs to be approved by the government ANO’s coalition partner, the Social Democrats, approve of the choice.

Graffiti from Charles Bridge removed inexpertly

The graffiti which vandals sprayed on one of the support pillars of Charles Bridge some time ago was removed inexpertly overnight by an unknown person, according to the National Heritage Institute.

The clean-up job wasn't done by the company selected and nobody has so far claimed responsibility.

Experts started work on the site on Saturday afternoon and when they arrived back the next day they found that someone had removed the graffiti with an unknown substance.

Tests are now underway to determine whether the substance used had damaged the stones of the centuries old monument.

The culprits, two German tourists aged 23 and 30, are to pay fines of CZK 100,000 each plus CZK 40,000 to cover the cost of the damage, according to a Prague 1 District Court ruling. Both have appealed.

Scientists: Animal adaptations not keeping pace with climate change

Animal adaptations are not keeping pace with climate change, according to an extensive scientific study involving Czech experts from Palacký University in Olomouc.

According to a study conducted in twenty countries, including the Czech Republic, the timing of life cycle events such as breeding and migration is mismatched to current climate and not all species are adapting fast enough, meaning they are threatened with extinction.

According to the study some bird species are particularly at risk in this respect.

ANO party still in the lead but sliding

Prime Minister Babiš’ ANO party still maintains a strong lead over its political rivals, but support for the party has been gradually sliding, according to a poll conducted by the Median agency.

If elections were held today ANO would get 28.5 percent of the vote, down by two percentage points since May, followed by the Pirate Party with 14 percent, and the Civic Democrats with 12.5 percent.

The only other parties which would cross the 5 percent threshold needed to win seats in the lower house of Parliament are the Freedom and Direct Democracy Party, the Social Democrats, the Communists, the Mayors and Independents and the Christian Democrats.

More than half of Czechs dissatisfied with state of judiciary

More than half of Czechs are dissatisfied with the work of the courts and state attorneys, according to the results of a survey conducted by the STEM polling agency.

Fifty-three percent of respondents said they were not happy with the present state of the judiciary and 32 percent of respondents said it needed radical reform.

Older people, and in particular small and mid-sized entrepreneurs, expressed dissatisfaction particularly with the slow pace of Czech courts, while younger people were inclined to be more tolerant in their judgement.

Freight train accident likely caused by human error

An accident involving a freight train carrying lime from Mariánské Lázně to Plzeň on Sunday is believed to have been caused by human error.

According to preliminary reports the train driver exceeded the permitted speed limit and lost control.

Nobody was hurt in the accident but the damage has been estimated in the tens of millions of crowns and the track is likely to remain closed until August 2nd.

Weather forecast

Tuesday should bring partly cloudy to overcast skies with rain in places and day temperatures between 25 and 29 degrees Celsius.